Chandler USD updates COVID-19 data at each school site at least once a week, according to officials, and has been doing so since students made their return to brick-and-mortar schooling in September and October.

The district records both active and resolved cases and gives the context of the total employee and student population at each school site and the active percent positive of coronavirus cases. The percentage of positive cases is what district officials have recommended the governing board use to determine if school closures are necessary as COVID-19 cases continue to rise across Chandler, Maricopa County and the state.

On Dec. 3, Chandler USD updated its online frequently asked questions regarding how the district handles the data and procedures for when someone tests positive.

The following questions and responses are from the district and have not been edited.

Q: What is a confirmed active case?

CUSD has a confirmed positive test from a student or staff member. A positive test can be confirmed either by a parent or staff member providing a copy of the positive COVID-19 test result that the registered nurse will confirm OR confirmation from Maricopa County Department of Health Services of a positive test. Most often our health services team receives a copy of the test directly from the parent or staff member before confirmation from the County. The person who has tested positive is confirmed to have been on a CUSD campus during their infectious period. The infectious period is defined as starting 48 hours prior to the onset of COVID-19 symptoms or a positive test result, whichever came first and through the remainder of the virus infection.

Q: How does an active case become a resolved case?

A case becomes resolved once an “Active” individual has completed a 10-Day isolation and is cleared to return to on-campus activities. The case is then moved from the “Active” count on the campus dashboard to the “resolved” count.

Q: Why do some cases only stay in the active column for a few days or go straight to the resolved column?

Often when we get notified of a case many days have passed since the individual tested positive. This means there may only be a few days left in the individual['s] isolation period if any. The case is still traced the same and appropriate notifications are made.

Q: Why do I hear some cases do not show on the dashboard?

If an individual was not on campus during their infectious period and have not exposed anyone on a CUSD campus, then the number is not reflected on the dashboard. Example: the individual became ill while already home on quarantine and was never on campus.

Q: What is the infectious period for a person with COVID-19?

Based on current evidence a person may shed the virus up to 48 hours before symptom on-set and for up to 10 days from symptom on-set.

Q: What does isolation mean?

A 10-Day isolation separates individuals that have tested positive for COVID-19 from individuals that are not sick.

Q: What does quarantine mean?

A 14-Day quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who have been exposed to a person who tested positive for COVID-19 to see if they will become sick.

Q: Where do the guidelines for isolation and quarantine come from?

CUSD follows guidelines set by the CDC and the Maricopa County Department of Public Health. If you have questions about the guidelines we follow, please see Maricopa County Public Health's FAQ's. You can also speak to someone directly at MCPH by calling the COVID-19 Parent Hotline. Dial 2-1-1, then press Option 6 for COVID-19, and then Option 3 to connect to a hotline staff member. You also can submit your questions through MCPH Contact Us web form.

Q: What if one of my kids is quarantined? Do I need to keep my other kids home?

No, only the individual(s) who have had “close” contact with a positive case will need to quarantine for 14 days and monitor for symptoms. Should that person become ill and test positive for COVID-19 the other siblings would need to quarantine for 14-days from their last exposure with the positive family member.

Q: When will I be notified of a positive COVID-19 case?

If there are students who had “close” contact with the individual on a CUSD campus who has been confirmed with a positive case of COVID-19, they will be notified by phone from a designated CUSD staff member. They will also receive written communication regarding the 14-day quarantine from the CUSD District office. Those who were in a classroom with an individual who has been confirmed with a positive case of COVID19 but did not have “close” contact will receive an email/letter from the school stating that there was a positive case in the classroom.

Q: How is “close” contact determined?

Close contact is defined as “being within six feet for a cumulative of fifteen minutes during a 24-hour period or had physical contact with a person with COVID-19.” Any student deemed to have been in close contact with the positive individual is required to stay home for 14 days from the LAST date of exposure.

Q: Why didn’t I receive a notification of a positive COVID-19 case?

If you did not receive notification of a positive COVID-19 case that means you or your student were not identified as a “close” contact or were not in the classroom of the positive COVID-19 case.

Q: I am a teacher and several of my students are quarantined for 14 days; why didn’t I receive a notice from the district?

Individuals are placed on a 14-Day quarantine because it has been determined that they had exposure to an individual that tested positive for COVID-19. The quarantined individual has not tested positive for COVID-19; therefore, this situation does not meet the criteria for notification to be sent.

Q: I am a teacher and I have heard several of my students talking about testing positive; what should I do?

All reports of positive cases should be reported to the administrators and/or the health office so they may be investigated to verify if true.

Q: When should I stay home?

It is vital to the health and safety of our community that all students and staff stay home if they are having ANY COVID-19 symptoms. Students who have had “close” contact with a positive COVID-19 individual or have been tested for COVID-19 and are awaiting test results need to also stay home.